2008 Volunteer Administrator of the Year

Congratulations to Ormonde Wilkinson, Volunteer Specialist at Westminster Canterbury Richmond, in being named GRAVA’s 2008 Volunteer Administrator of the Year!
Ormonde Wilkinson GRAVA's 2008 Volunteer Administrator of the YearWestminster Canterbury Richmond (WCR) is a continuing care retirement community (CCRC) that makes it possible to live in a personal residence with the peace of mind that assisted living and nursing care are available as needed.  At Westminster Canterbury, single-family homes and apartments for those living independently; three levels of assisted living; and two levels of nursing care in our all-private-room Health Care Center are available.  Residents particularly enjoy the neighborhood community setting and the focus on maintaining healthy lifestyles.

Ormonde began working at WCR in 1981 as the head of the volunteer department.  She increased participation in the program from 76 volunteers in 1982 to over 330 volunteers in 2004.

Taking the time to recognize volunteers is one key to Ormonde’s success.  From the Laurel Award program in February, which honors outstanding resident and community group volunteers, to a National Volunteer Week dessert party and an end-of-summer party for teen volunteers, Ormonde continually strives to let the volunteers at WCR know they are appreciated.  She personally takes the time to send thank you, get well, sympathy and birthday cards to volunteers, as well as making regular phone calls to check on people and thank them for a job well done.

Continued recruitment through schools, community groups, local churches and colleges and by word-of-mouth is another key to the success of Ormonde and WCR’s volunteer program.  She encourages new residents to volunteer.  She developed the volunteer handbook; recruitment, application and orientation materials; and numerous forms which were not in existence before she came on board.

For the last 20 years, Ormonde has published a quarterly volunteer newsletter.  She has participated in various task forces on a variety of topics, including planning for growth/expansion.

A major expansion of WCR was completed in 2006.  The campus grew from just under 600,000 square feet to over 1 million square feet, and the resident population grew from 590 to 910; the number of employees grew from 450 to over 700.  Ormonde took this growth in stride and increased the number of volunteers by 25% in these areas:  a second gift shop, a new child development center, new assisted living quarters with 67 apartments, a memory-support building with 72 residents, a renovated Pavilion area, and more emphasis in the health center on 1:1 interaction.  Volunteers were added in stages as these areas were completed and occupied.  Ormonde started the Breakfast Buddies program in 2007, helped develop a new staff volunteer program in 2006, and currently runs the social accountability program for WCR.

Ormonde has continually recognized the importance of professional development.  She joined the Association for Volunteer Administration in 1981 and attended the first national conference in 1982.  Before GRAVA was formed, she joined Colonial Virginia AVA in Williamsburg.  Once GRAVA was organized, Ormonde joined and has been a steady member ever since.  She has served on the GRAVA Board as a vice president and program chairperson, and she has also served on GRAVA conference committees.

In February 2005, Ormonde was awarded her Certification in Volunteer Administration (CVA).

*Pictured above, Janice Beatty and Kathy Morton present Ormonde her award at the May 1, 2008 membership meeting.

Back to Volunteer Leader of the Year page

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